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Machiavellian Democracy

by John P. Mccormick

Intensifying economic and political inequality poses a dangerous threat to the liberty of democratic citizens. Mounting evidence suggests that economic power, not popular will, determines public policy, and that elections consistently fail to keep public officials accountable to the people. John P. McCormick confronts this dire situation through a dramatic reinterpretation of Niccol- Machiavelli's political thought. Highlighting previously neglected democratic strains in Machiavelli's major writings, McCormick excavates institutions through which the common people of ancient, medieval, and Renaissance republics constrained the power of wealthy citizens and public magistrates, and he imagines how such institutions might be revived today. Machiavellian Democracy fundamentally reassesses one of the central figures in the Western political canon and decisively intervenes into current debates over institutional design and democratic reform. Inspired by Machiavelli's thoughts on economic class, political accountability and popular empowerment, McCormick proposes a citizen body that excludes socioeconomic and political elites and grants randomly selected common people significant veto, legislative, and censure authority within government and over public officials.

Weimar Thought

by John P. Mccormick Peter E. Gordon

During its short lifespan, the Weimar Republic (1918-33) witnessed an unprecedented flowering of achievements in many areas, including psychology, political theory, physics, philosophy, literary and cultural criticism, and the arts. Leading intellectuals, scholars, and critics--such as Hannah Arendt, Walter Benjamin, Ernst Bloch, Bertolt Brecht, and Martin Heidegger--emerged during this time to become the foremost thinkers of the twentieth century. Even today, the Weimar era remains a vital resource for new intellectual movements. In this incomparable collection, Weimar Thought presents both the specialist and the general reader a comprehensive guide and unified portrait of the most important innovators, themes, and trends of this fascinating period. The book is divided into four thematic sections: law, politics, and society; philosophy, theology, and science; aesthetics, literature, and film; and general cultural and social themes of the Weimar period. The volume brings together established and emerging scholars from a remarkable array of fields, and each individual essay serves as an overview for a particular discipline while offering distinctive critical engagement with relevant problems and debates. Whether used as an introductory companion or advanced scholarly resource, Weimar Thought provides insight into the rich developments behind the intellectual foundations of modernity.

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